This was partly inspired by having someone recently ask me, in a comment, "What do you do for a living, anyway?", which will be the second part in this series.
Now to the meat of it: Who am I?
There is actually a fairly large bunch of information about me and what I've been up to lately on my website. I think it's safe to say that most people who know me would agree I'm a complex person, or at least a person who leads a complex life. This makes me a bit hard to sum up briefly, but then, I hope, so are we all.
So, I'm, uh, almost 32. Female. Married. Blue eyes, Brown hair, about 5' 6" tall I think, and more than rounded at the corners. Strength: not what it once was (I used to play soccer in my youth and I continue to dance and do Tai Chi, but shoulder, knee and back injuries have made it less and less of a good idea to lift heavy objects as I once did in technical theater). Dexterity: high. Constitution: not so good; chronic and sporadic respiratory problems including exercise-induced asthma, Herpes just in case I'm not worn enough when I'm stressed, Hypoglycemia, and far, far too much stress and tension, which combine with a badly misaligned neck to give me terrific headaches. I'm stubborn and determined so I don't let all of this slow me down much, until it knocks my feet out from under me, and I'm forced to rest. Wisdom: at least mid-range, I think, and rising over time, I can tell. Intelligence: high enough that I mostly hang out with smart people. I'm one of those types whose verbal scores on tests have been higher than 99% of the population since third grade, but I also have decent math and spatial problem solving abilities, a BA in History, and a Master's in Engineering. Still, I've always listed reading as my main hobby, and SF (speculative fiction) comprises almost all of what I read. Charisma: pretty high; I like people, and it seems they can tell.
I'm a nice person, I like to think. I'm a bit of an optimist and an idealist, though this is not how my friends think of me according to my Johari Window. I'm pretty loyal to my friends, and I have the great luck to have a goodly number of friends who are really terrific, wonderful people. I don't have many enemies, so far as I know. I think I've inadvertently pissed some people off, and I've been told that I'm less diplomatic now than I was three years ago. I think the most likely way I upset people is by commenting on something I think they've done wrongly or poorly, in too sharp a tone and either in public or in company that ends up passing the comment on in such a way that it comes off really badly. I'm working on that. (Both on trying to be nicer, more patient, and diplomatic, and on watching when I say things, and to whom.)
The only people I've ever known to really hate me were, or wanted to be, romantically involved with someone who was or wanted to be romantically involved with me. This is good, since it's not been very many people (three) and I think it's generally a waste of someone's time and energy to actively hate or resent someone else. On the other hand, I dislike feeling guilty about being loved by people (I think that love is multiplied, not divided), and I don't like some of the social structures and memes that reinforce the value of jealousy.
Do people have reason to be jealous of me? Sure. I have a loving and supportive family and a terrific husband (murphyw). Bill and I have a house in Ann Arbor, MI, which you can safely take as an indicator that we are reasonably well off, especially compared to many of our peers. Well enough that Bill could take the last half year off and be hiking the Appalachian Trail even as we speak (the savings difference between us and friends might substantially shift once we start having kids, which we plan to soon, but popular stats suggest we put away vastly more of our income compared to most people, and I've already paid off my student loans. We've worked hard for what we have, but we don't take it for granted). We feel very lucky and especially appreciate that we have space to entertain friends, have guests, and even invite friends to live with us for extended periods of time.
I have also been lucky in my career, about which I'll say more later, and also in my fannish hobby of running science fiction conventions and working on fannish publications. I've chaired a couple successful conventions and done many things for other conventions. A fanzine I proofread won a Hugo award and has grown up to be nominated as a semiprozine this year. Subterranean Press now hires me freelance to copyedit real books about to be published, and through my fannish activities I have made some dear friends who also happen to be famous. That makes it awkward sometimes, in that talking about my friends and the exciting stuff I've been up to can seem like name-dropping, and sometimes people seem to find the fact that I know someone (such as Neil Gaiman) to be the most shiny, interesting thing about me, which I hope it's not.
But I don't mind if people swing by this journal mainly because of my association with Neil. I know it's a polyglot journal that isn't updated very often, so I figure if you stick around it's because you have some interest in me or in things I find interesting. I'll try to share more of that in the future than I have in the past. Some of the things Neil and I have in common are that neither of us tends to take time off, we both find lots of different things very interesting and worth our time, we work hard at what we do, and we both try to do right by those who like and love us.
So there was a bit about me. Maybe folks will add things about me or themselves. I know the weekend's not a big time to gather comments, so don't sweat it either way.